Tuesday, June 21, 2011
When you say to someone "Let's have a picnic" there are many images that may come to mind... I guess it depends on past experiences. But even if you have some melodramatic memories of bee stings and sandy sandwiches you still also may have the idealistic image of a 19th century English oil painting or a riverside impromptu picnic a la 'la belle epoche'. The gorgeous, romantic vision of a seemingly haphazardly prepared basket of food accompanied by a nondescript bottle of red, a row boat, straw hats with ribbons, a blanket and a couple of tasteful throw pillows, somewhere there is a bicycle with a basket... this is my summer picnic fantasy.
I have yet to easily stumble into such a scene, but if you get a few of the elements right ,you can imagine the rest. The right picnic basket is pretty important. Keeping the food simple yet fancy is also important. There is a big difference between a picnic and a barbecue ! Barbecue's are meant to be a little tacky. It's fun to get down home for your back yard barbecue. But picnics have the potential to be romantic works of art. A still life waiting to be painted.
It's summertime; the fruit is falling off the trees, the days are loooong, thinking gets lazy and conversation wanders. Pack a late afternoon picnic - with care ! - stroll down to the park or nearest lake or river and lay down your blanket. Take your shoes off, look up at the trees, let your mind go where it will, nibble at some bread and fruit and know that you are sharing an experience relished by people for centuries. Lazy summer days, bread and wine, a nap and a dream...